Clothing drive to support Lamar Co. students

By HASKEL BURNS,

Lamar County residents are encouraged to “Share the Warmth” this holiday season by supporting a clothing drive to help students in the Lamar County School District.

During the drive, which runs until December 16, participants can donate new or gently-used coats or school uniforms for all ages.

“We have a lot of kids that come into our district, and we haven’t found an organization with the funds to be able to buy uniforms right now,” said Latressa Young, social worker with the school district. “So for kids that come into our school district who do not have uniforms or can’t afford them, they’re able to get them from our schools.

“And especially with the cold weather coming, I felt like there probably was a need for kids needing jackets. I know it’s expensive (to buy new clothing), so you sometimes don’t want to ask somebody to buy a coat, but if they have used coats that are still really good coats that a kid could use, why not donate that to the schools so the students can benefit from those?”

In addition to coats and uniforms, socks and undergarments in unopened packages also are accepted for the drive. Donations can be dropped off at any school in the district – Oak Grove, Sumrall, Purvis and Lumberton – or at the district office at 424 Martin Luther King Drive in Purvis.

“If (participants) don’t have a kid that’s in one of those schools, they can still take it to one of those sites,” Young said. “And if they just want to get it to the district office, I can get it to whatever school site that may need it.”

The district also will accept monetary donations, which employees will use to shop for the clothing needs of students. Checks should be made out to the Lamar County Education Foundation, with the specification that the donation is intended for uniforms/clothing.

“We get a lot of people who want to donate, but don’t have kids, so they can do the monetary donations,” Young said. “We have someone that oversees that, and it’s also tax-deductible.”

Donations also can be mailed to the Lamar County Education Foundation, P.O. Box 18590, Hattiesburg, MS, 39404. For more information, call the district office at (601) 794-1030.